White Dog said, "Poor Sachi has been waiting to tell his vet tale and everything keeps popping up to steal his moment." I looked at our Little Man lying on his paws sadly watching me type. "How about right now," I asked him. "It is your turn to tell about your visit to see Dr. Julia." I picked him up onto my lap.
"She called me Tubby," he said, talking as I transcribed. "Right to my face!"
It was Sachi's annual wellness checkup. In his mind it was cruel and unnecessarily harsh. First, my Happy Boy was stuck not once, but TWICE, for his shots. "And I didn't even nip or anything!" he complained. Then they took him into the lab to draw blood and do a heartworm test (which was negative).
While we waited for his blood panel, Dr. Julia listened to his heart and looked into his ears, eyes and throat. She ran her expert hands along his body, squeezing and moving parts. Then she sat down; Steve held his devoted boy in his lap.
"This Tubby boy needs to go on a diet. He has gained TWO pounds in the past year." "Two pounds is a lot and doesn't make sense," Steve defended his buddy. "He only gets a cup of food a day and he is always active wrestling with Zsofia." Dr. Julia shook her head, "More veggies, fewer treats. Maybe try a senior or low-cal kibble. He was already heavy last year and this is NOT good." The blood panel was good, no signs of diabetes and his thyroid was in normal range.
Sachi looked at me and knew changes were coming. I fully understand the risks that come with being overweight and two pounds on a dog that should weigh ten is a LOT. He snuggled against Steve's chest and licked his face. "I bet her scale is wrong, dad. Ask when it was calibrated last." I heard Steve promise to reweigh Sachi when we got home just to make sure he was not being treated "unfairly" due to an electronic malfunction.
When we got home Steve kept his promise...Sachi actually weighed a tenth of a pound MORE at home. Sachi wailed in frustration at the vision of what was to come.
I gathered the White Dog Army around me. "Sachi needs to lose a bit of weight. Yo and Bella, Dr. Julia is probably going to tell you both the same thing. Storm you know dropping some pounds is important to keeping your colitis in balance. So we are going to make a few changes. Mid day treats are going to be reduced from two treats to one...Sachi, you and Storm will share one. You will not get two bites of every meal dad and I eat...I will decide when you get bites and how many. And since Candace is growing such a beautiful garden full of fresh veggies, expect more crunchy fresh things in your dinner."
I handed out a single turkey and sweet potato strip to each of the WDA...and split one to give to our smallest and chubbiest ones. Sachi wolfed his down almost as fast as Zso did, and then sat at my feet. "That is all there is, Sweet Heart," I told him. He jumped against my leg. "Nope, I mean it."
The little stinker sulked for a minute that scurried over to where Puff was still slowly chewing pieces of her treat. He stole the biggest piece right from under her mouth. "Hey!" He ignored me and ran outside.
When he came in a bit later, I caught him in my arms. "Another new rule, Little Man," I told him. "You will be held during treat time and will not be released until everypup has finished. Being on a diet is NOT a license to steal food." He look at me as if to ask, "Well, how else am I going to not starve?"